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A good post on the Ordinary Form of the Mass… October 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Ecumenism, episcopate, Eucharist, General Catholic, Latin Mass, Liturgy, religious, Tradition, Virtue.
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……written by a priest-abbot who has, for years, only offered the Traditional Mass.  Due to circumstances recently, he had to offer the Ordinary Form of the Mass, in French!, and he describes the experience of the new Mass viz a viz the TLM.  I think many of the comments made by Dom Mark Kirby are excellent, insightful, and apropos.  I think what Dom Kirby is getting at, and what I pray we all would wan to achieve, is a vastly improved Ordinary Form that truly follows the intentions of the documents of Vatican II better than the Mass we have all typically experienced for the past several decades.  You are, of course, free to disagree, but I think that if these recommendations were implemented, the benefits to the Church across the board, from acceptance of Doctrine to reception of the Sacraments to prayer life to involvement in the life of the parish, and many more, would all dramatically improve. Bear in mind, Kirby is discussing a Novus Ordo Mass offered very reverently, without abuses. The post is long, so I’ll only quote a few bits, you can read the rest at New Liturgical Movement (with comments and emphasis):

Ad Orientem

It goes without saying that the rubric of the New Order of the Mass that assumes the eastward position from the Offertory until Holy Communion needs to become always and everywhere normative. Nothing has done more to distort the ars celebrandi than the habit of offering the Holy Sacrifice facing the people. It is, in many instances, an affront to the Divine Majesty. [This may be going far?, but I think it has severely distorted peoples understanding and practice at Mass.  I think Mass facing the people has done more to undermine belief in the Sacrificial nature of the Mass than any other change] It is, moreover, a tedious distraction to both priest and people, and a symbolic and, alas, subliminal, but all too effective, devalorization of the sacrificial character of Holy Mass. No amount of catechesis, however well-intentioned, will be able to restore to the ars celebrandi of the New Order of the Mass what the position ad orientem will bring about of and by itself. Here, more than anywhere else, actions do speak louder than words. [I agree. In like manner, the removal of so many genuflections and instances of the priest crossing himself have also fatally undermined both reverence within the Mass generally, and weakened belief in the vertical, supernatural character of the Mass]

The Roman Canon

It was when I came to the Eucharistic Prayer, using the Roman Canon as adapted — I rather think mutilated — in the New Order of the Mass, that I found myself most deeply disturbed. The elimination of the traditional signs of the cross and genuflexions is redolent of a puritanical rationalism that either fears the participation of the body in worship or sneers at it; it is, in effect, the divorce of word from action, a kind of disincarnation of the text.

There is absolutely no reason to have altered the age-old and venerable words of consecration in the Roman Canon. Nothing in Sacrosanctum Concilium authorizes or justifies so barbaric an assault on a text universally regarded as sacrosanct and fixed by tradition. Fifty years after the Second Vatican Council, has not the moment at last come to repair the damage done by an erroneous interpretation and brash disregard of the letter of the Conciliar text and the intentions of the Council Fathers?

The Words of Consecration and Mysterium Fidei

I would propose, then, that the words of consecration in the Eucharistic Prayers II, III, and IV of the New Order of the Mass be brought into conformity with the traditional text of the Roman Canon as found in the Missal of 1962, and as used at the Second Vatican Council and in the years immediately following it. This would entail the replacement of the mysterium fidei within the words of consecration of the chalice and the suppression of the acclamation introduced in the Missal of Paul VI, which, to be honest, would be, to my mind at least, no great loss. Its inorganic insertion into the Canon has the effect of an interruption of the flow and movement of the prayer itself. [Dom Kirby is advocating that the statement “the mystery of faith” be inserted back into the Consecration of the Chalice, the deletion of which is one of the reasons why Cekada feels the NO Mass is invalid, and for the removal of the people’s acclamation of the “mystery of faith,” whatever it may be in any given Mass.  My reply is..yes.]

Eucharistic Prayers?

Of course, one needs to ask if four Eucharistic Prayers are, in fact, necessary in the New Rite of the Mass. Of the four, Eucharistic Prayer II is the one most widely used, not because of any intrinsic sublimity, but because of its brevity. It is a routinely rattled text that has longed passed its expiration date. It should be given an honourable burial alongside the breviary of Cardinal Quignonez. Eucharistic Prayer IV is used very rarely, if at all, in most places. Eucharistic Prayer III, the so-called Canon of Paul VI is the second most widely used. Has the time not come to reduce the Eucharistic Prayers of the New Order of the Mass from four to two, keeping only the venerable Roman Canon and what is now called Eucharistic Prayer III? It should, I think be legislated that the use of Roman Canon be obligatory on all Sundays, solemnities, feasts of the Apostles and of the saints named in the Communicantes and in the Nobis Quoque. [I might go further and say that Church legislation should supress all Eucharistic Prayers save for the Roman Canon]

Holy Communion

The manner of distributing Holy Communion to the faithful has been addressed by the example of the Holy Father, but his example has not garnered the support it deserves in the episcopate. [That is, terminate Communion in the hand as the abuse it really is and return to Communion on the tongue, preferably kneeling]  It would seem that most bishops are insensitive to the persuasive language of example  [that’s a delicate way of putting it!] and, thus, must be compelled by legislation. Holy Communion in the hand and the scandalously abusive proliferation of Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion are matters that must be addressed by clear and binding legislation. The grave scandal among the Eastern Orthodox Churches that these practices cause is, of itself, sufficient to warrant their immediate suppression. [I couldn’t agree more]

Go read the rest at NLM.  If all the changes Dom Mark Kirby recommends were made, I believe the Ordinary Form would be a much more worthy reform of the Mass and far more in line with the stated intent of the documents of Vatican II.  I think the benefit to souls would be incalculable.  And it would keep the Ordinary Form quite differentiated from the TLM – which I’m not sure is ideal but would probably appeal to many.  I pray this analysis garners serious discussion (not here, in the places it matters, but I always lurve your comments, darlin’).

One bishop gets it, the other doesn’t October 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, asshatery, contraception, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, persecution, scandals, sickness, Society.
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Adding to the list of bishops who have told their flock that voting for candidates that support intrinsic evils puts their soul at risk, Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio recently stated the following:

It is inconceivable to me how Catholics could support such policies. Indeed, Roman Catholics who support abortion rights and vote for a candidate because of those policies, place him/herself outside of the life of the Church. In so doing, they also place themselves in moral danger.

I would state that any vote for a candidate who endorses intrinsic evils places one’s soul in mortal danger, not merely voting for them because of the intrinsic evil.

But, up in Juneau, Alaska, Bishop Edward Burns conflates the dogmatic with the prudential, and equates Biden and Ryan:

Vice President Biden, while stating that he believes, as his Church does, that life begins at conception, and while professing his personal opposition to abortion, supports the virtually unlimited right to abortion that has resulted in deaths of millions of unborn children since the tragic Roe v. Wade decision in 1973. In addition to this position of his in conflict with the teaching of the Church, Vice President Biden has also come out in support of legalizing same-sex marriage.

By way of contrast, Congressman Ryan has been a resolute advocate of Catholic moral teaching on the defense of the unborn and traditional marriage between one man and one woman. However, the Federal budget that he has proposed could do harm to the poor and vulnerable by neglecting their legitimate needs. For example, Congressman Ryan proposed a budget that has received a critique by the Domestic Justice and Human Development and International Justice and Peace committees of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, stating that “a just spending bill cannot rely on disproportionate cuts in essential services to poor and vulnerable persons.”

Well, those are just opinions, opinions refuted by Ryan’s own Bishop Robert Morlino.  A sizable minority of bishops at the most recent USCCB meeting took issue with the statements coming out of “Domestic Justice and Human Development,” tiring of the same conflation of the dogmatic and prudential and the seeming reflexive hostility towards virtually any cuts to government spending (aside from defense – certain bishops are always happy to see defense cut).  Such an attitude is simply no longer realistic, given the budget situation this nation finds itself in.  At any rate, it is ridiculous to attempt to equate the best means to aid the poor,  an issue entirely of prudential judgment, with support for an intrinsic evil like abortion.  Catholics can argue about how to best aid the poor (constantly growing government spending not being the only means of accomplishing this goal), but we cannot argue about whether or not we can support an intrinsic evil like abortion.

One final note: when will Biden’s bishop, or any bishop, challenge him, directly, by name, on his repeated reference to his awesome Catholicity?  The only statement I’ve seen from the USCCB or an individual bishop regarding Biden is his laughably false statement that the Obama administration is not persecuting the Church with the HHS mandate.  Now, he’s put out a video for Catholics for Obama that plays up his awesome Catholic faith, and how very much it means to him, except when it comes to the slaughter of 52 million completely innocent children, which he has constantly endorsed in his soon to be 40 year career in the Senate and as Vice President.  You’d think that might earn a bit of commentary.  But, we can’t have that precious 501(c)3 status even questioned, let alone threatened, can we?

I’d put his “I’m a super Catholic!” video on my blog, but, frankly, I don’t want it on here.

CRS confirms – we work with groups that don’t support Catholic values October 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, Basics, contraception, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, error, General Catholic, scandals, Society.
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I have said it before, and I’ll say it again, Catholic Relief Services, the USCCB’s arm of Caritas Internationale or the Catholic international relief agency, has doubled down yet again on their refusal to uphold Church Doctrine to an amazing degree.  They just did so again, in a press release which Catholic Culture seems to think implies a wonderful adherence to the Magisterium (I add emphasis and comments):

It is true that CRS works with groups which do not share our Catholic values.[Why?  I refuse to believe that CRS cannot perform its function without working with groups that distribute contraception, or perform abortions, or advocate for socialism, or any of the myriad other problems CRS partners have. It is well known that the Vatican is working hard to reform Caritas because it has become so notoriously unfaithful, unwilling to evangelize, and in general embarrassed, at best, regarding the Faith. The indictments at Life Site News were well-documented and thorough.  They could not be refuted.  So, CRS now appears to be stating…..”yes, we give money to groups and agencies which perform actions which are intrinsic evils……..so what?” I leave it to my readers to determine what to do regarding CRS and their requests for donations]  We employ non-Catholics as well as Catholics. [You also employ a disturbingly high percentage of people with ties to population reduction efforts, contraceptive agencies, etc]  We belong to coalitions which extend the reach of services to the poor often in remote areas where we do not operate.  [I’m not certain that’s the only reason.  NGOs have evolved a very cunning mode of operations, where there are all these coalitions and working groups and much shuffling of staff between one agency and another.  To the jaundiced eye, it  might appear to be an exercise in plausible deniability] We are members of professional associations so as to obtain information and technological advances so that we are best prepared to serve those who are in our care.

When these associations offer programs which run contrary to Church teachings, we do not participate. [This is disingenuous, at best. These associations requires dues and other fees to be a member.  Those fees are then used to advance all the various aspects of the organization, including those which run counter to Catholic belief.  And given how many CRS senior staff have strong ties to abortion, contraception, population control, etc., it is not unreasonable to ask whether there is more participation than we are being led to believe]  Our membership in these coalitions gives us a platform to present effective methods and procedures that demonstrate the efficacy of Catholic approaches to health and family planning.  These are our opportunities to make space in the public for the Catholic viewpoint and to witness to our faith.

That’s all fine and dandy, but what about the risk of scandal?  Isn’t scandal a very serious sin?  Isn’t there an onus upon all Catholic agencies to do all they can to avoid even the appearance of scandal?  Does the “good” being done by membership in these associations, and giving money to pro-abort/contracept/population control groups, outweigh the potential for scandal?  Again, the support for these organizations is being presented in as innocuous manner as possible……the evidence presented thus far leads me to question just how “pure” CRS is with regard to its membership in these organizations.  And since there are numerous other charities that don’t have even a remote relation with these groups advocating for or performing intrinsic evils, why should I support CRS, which is obviously very intent on keeping its associations with these problematic groups?

This is exactly the point the Vatican has been making regarding Caritas and CRS, that their commitment to Catholic belief and practice seems inadequate.  There has been a major reshuffling of Caritas Internationale leadership, and a number of statement from high-level curial officials stating that the organization needs to realign its priorities.  Is this response in consonance with the drive from the Vatican?  I don’t know.  It seems not to be.

I would dearly love to donate generously to groups like CRS, Catholic Charities, etc (but not CCHD!), but at present I don’t feel I can do so in conscience.  Sadly, it appears CRS seems determined not to change.

Adoration Vigil at St. Mark in Plano October 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, Eucharist, General Catholic, Interior Life, North Deanery, sickness, Society, Virtue.
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Another election-oriented period of Eucharistic Adoration will be offered at St. Mark parish in Plano for 33 hours running from 1pm on Nov. 5 to 6pm on Nov. 6.  This effort needs people to sign up, especially men from the midnight to 6am time period.

The Adoration is “themed” to implore God’s Grace to convert the hearts and minds of our fellow Americans.  Obviously, there is great concern regarding the election of leaders who will defend the sanctity of life, respect, defend, and promote the rights of the Church, and end the downward spiral towards the socialism that has everywhere proven so antithetical to the Faith.   Please assist if you can.  You can contact Elizabeth Muzyka to sign up.

Thanks to Fr. Smith for being willing to host this Adoration in the north deanery.  There is another I already blogged about at St. Monica in Dallas.  Thanks to Fr. Biershenck for that.

Gain an indulgence for a poor soul on All Soul’s Day! October 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Glory, Holy suffering, Interior Life, Latin Mass, North Deanery, Novenas, Tradition, Virtue.
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Praying for the souls in Purgatory is a great spiritual work of mercy, all too neglected these days with “instant canonizations” at funerals.  On All Soul’s Day, November 2nd, you can gain an indulgence for a soul in Purgatory by doing the following:

From the
Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter–

Indulgences for the Poor Souls
Current regulations in force by Pope Benedict XVI 

I On All Souls’ Day (Nov. 2) a plenary indulgence, applicable only to the Poor Souls, is granted to those who visit any parish church or public oratory and there recite one Our Father and one Credo.

II On all the days from November I though November 8 inclusive, a plenary indulgence, applicable only to the Poor Souls, is granted to those who visit a cemetery and pray even if only mentally for the departed. [so, you can gain one plenary indulgence a day, if you are properly disposed and complete the other requirements for the indulgence.  Think of it……you can free a soul totally from the tremendous pains of Purgatory through your actions!  That soul will then pray for you, both in your life and when you die!  Such prayers will be tremendously efficacious for your sanctification and salvation!]

Conditions for both indulgences:

1. Only one plenary indulgence can be granted per day.

2. It is necessary to be in the state of grace, at least by completion of the work.

3. Freedom from attachment to sin, even venial sin, is necessary; otherwise the indulgence is only partial. (By this is meant attachment to a particular sin, not sin in general.)

4. Holy Communion must be received each time the indulgence is sought. [so, to gain the indulgence each day, you must assist at Mass.  Awe, darn, you mean I have to go to Mass?!?  Twist my arm!]

5. Prayers must he recited for the intentions of the Holy Father on each day the indulgence is sought. (No particular prayers are prescribed. One Our Father and one Hail Mary suffice, or other suitable prayers.

6. A sacramental confession must he made within a week of completion of the prescribed work. (One confession made during the week, made with the intention of gaining all the indulgences, suffices.) [And if you haven’t been to Confession for quite some time, what a wonderful opportunity to avail yourself of this so very helpful, so very necessary Sacrament!] 

Get out there and aid some suffering souls!